Silchar, Nov 29: “It is not demonization but in true sense demonetization for the larger interest of the working class people of the country,” said S P Tiwari, general secretary, central committee of Trade Union Coordition Centre (TUCC), New Delhi, while addressing the open session of the trade union body here today. Tiwari the chief patron of the body pointed out that three other countries which include Egypt, Libya and Philippines did ban its currency notes in tiol interests. rendra Modi Government, he added to say, has taken the wise decision and our trade union body working for the poor and downtrodden has extended its support to the move.
Spelling out the welfare activities of his organization, he said their body has been fighting for the cause of the mahouts who have been rendered jobless due to total ban on the utilization of elephants for domestic and other purposes under Wildlife Protection and Preservation Act of 1972. As a result of which, thousands of mahouts now find it hard to maintain themselves and their families. Finding mahouts in distress, S P Tiwari said, “We move the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) and the state government for their rehabilitation.” In the meantime, the PMO has sanctioned money from the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund to the mahouts.
The mahouts have been provided Rs.38,000 each family for the construction of Indira Awas Yoja and Rs.3 lakh deposited in their bank accounts. With the interests accrued monthly, their families have to be maintained, while other avenues of employments remain open for them. This fincial grant will eble 5029 families of 18 different districts of Assam to be rehabilitated in the district of Lakhimpur. Their trade union body, as pointed out S P Tiwari, has always taken up cudgel for the poor and distressed.
Barak Valley Agragami Nirman Sramik Union (BVANSU) which held its open session under TUCC deliberated over many of the burning issues and called upon the working class people to unite to fight for their cause. Rita Mazumder, a member of the BVANSU, said even after 70 years of Independence of the country, the poor continue to roll in the mire of poverty despite all the hard work and labour put in by them. Various legal provisions have been made to protect the unorganized working class and their families, but unfortutely no tangible changes have come.
Ratneswar Gogoi, state president of TUCC, Assam, hit out at the indifferent and callous attitude of both the Centre and the state to protect the wider interests of working class people. He reminded the state government initiated move in 2007 and in 2008 a board for the welfare of labour class was set up. But, long 8 years have lapsed since then, no concrete steps have been taken to implement the schemes and projects. 80% of the labour class remain neglected.
Despite all the constraints, trade union bodies have kept up the heat on the powers that be to look into the genuine grievances of the people in distress. In order to give a new direction and dimension to the various welfare measures of the Centre and the state, Assam Progressive Building and Other Construction Workers Federation under the chairmanship of Mihir ndi and Rafikul Islam as general secretary has continued to fight to uplift the social and economic status of the labour class.
Rafikul Islam appreciated the leaders of BVANSU which was constituted in 2014 for pursuing in an effective manner the causes of their larger numbers of working class people. He expressed his hope and confidence that in coming days, “Our struggle for working class people will yield fruitful results and we all have to work in unison.” Significantly, this is the first conference of BVANSU.